Ten calves were killed by gizzly bears in a ranch near Dupuyer, Montana Fish, Wildlife, and Parks stated in a press release Friday.
Specialists from the U.S. Department of Agriculture confirmed that grizzlies had killed the calves, which were found earlier this week in a creek bottom. However, it’s not certain which bears killed the cattle. Officials knew that at least 12 grizzlies were present in the area.
The livestock owner will be eligible for compensation from the livestock loss fund, and has cattle in that creek bottom to a safer pasture.
With Montana’s grizzlies trying to put on weight before hibernation, attacks and encounters are common this time of year. State wildlife officials have responded to “livestock depredation events” like these around central and southwest Montana this summer.
“Given the number of bears and their increased level of activity, it’s really important that people and communities in bear country secure their attractants,” said Gary Bertellotti, FWP’s Region 4 supervisor.
“Securing attractants means putting away bird feeders, keeping pet food inside and making sure you don’t have fruit on the ground under your trees. If people are observing bears or having problems, please let us know right away.”
People who see grizzly bears or have problems with them getting into attractants should immediately contact FWP. Livestock depredation events like this week’s are investigated by both FWP and U.S. Department of Agriculture Wildlife Services.
If producers have a depredation, they should contact either agency. Human safety concerns are addressed by FWP. To contact FWP call (406)454-5840. To contact USDA Wildlife Services call (406)657-6464.
Reporter Patrick Reilly can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at (406)758-4407.